We should invite the Pontiff to be part of the reconciliation journey

Elizabeth May

Mr. Speaker, this is an issue that touches on so very much of the deep and searing pain that was experienced by generations of indigenous people across Canada.

For those of us who are practising Christians, it touches on questions of our obligations as parliamentarians with regard to the structure and the institution of a church. I am an Anglican; my church has apologized. I know the Roman Catholic Church and the Pope deserve respect, and the situation creates some conflict for some people I have been speaking with in this place, but I completely agree with the resolution as put forward. I completely agree with the comments of my friend from Mégantic—L’Érable. This is a central recommendation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

As much as I hold the current Pope in the highest respect and find him an inspiring Christian figure and as much as there is separation between church and state, in this case we must follow through, invite the Pontiff to be part of the reconciliation journey, and ask the Pontiff, on behalf of the Canadian Catholic Church, to fully apologize and meet the obligations of reconciliation.

Luc Berthold – Member for Mégantic—L’Érable

Mr. Speaker, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s report contains a number of calls to action that still have not been implemented, and it is the duty of the institutions we represent to respond. We owe it to the young victims of residential schools. All those who were involved in one way or another need to take responsibility, look back at what happened, and ask themselves if there is something they need to do. Obviously, the answer is yes.